Team receive a warm welcome in Russian capital
Formula One racing came to Moscow on Friday as Jordan presented their 2005 car and race drivers. Tiago Monteiro and Narain Karthikeyan braved snow and temperatures of -10 degrees Celsius to show the EJ15 to Russian and international media, with the imposing landmarks of the Kremlin, St. Basil's Cathedral and Lenin's Mausoleum forming an impressive backdrop.
Jordan were purchased late last year by the Russian-backed Midland Group, whose name the team are due to take from 2006. We want our F1 team to have a Russian flavour so it was very important to introduce ourselves appropriately to the media and business here in Moscow, explained Jordans new managing director Colin Kolles.
We want to show them how thrilling Formula One is and I hope that it has been exciting for people to see a Formula One car and racing drivers here at the heart of the Russian capital.
Sporting director Trevor Carlin added: "We are delighted to be able to bring our Jordan car and drivers to Moscow. Its a magnificent city and we really are honoured to be hosted as F1 representatives in Russia. We are meeting some fantastic people during our visit and I wish it had not been such a brief stay. Were going directly to Melbourne now to make our final preparations for the Australian Grand Prix - we cant wait to race!"
Jordan will start the 2005 season with Toyota power and their all-new driver line-up. Karthikeyan, the first Formula One driver to hail from India, and Portugals Monteiro both said they were thrilled to be in the Russian capital.
I think Russia, like my home country India, is a nation which would very much like to host a race in the future Grand Prix calendar, said Karthikeyan. There are many similarities between us, although the climate is certainly not one of them! I think the main thing is more and more people are now backing Formula One. Its such a great business opportunity for sponsors and with the sport attracting interest in new countries, the fans are increasing in number by the day. I hope Russian motorsport fans adopt us as their team and I hope we can make them proud.
Monteiro commented: Im really excited to visit Moscow. This is my first time in Russia and Im impressed with how striking the place is and how busy and welcoming the people are. It is great to be able to bring the car with us just days before we leave for the first race, so Russian people can experience F1 up close in their own country. I really appreciate the support we have from fans here and its going to give us an extra boost of motivation in Melbourne in a weeks time and throughout the whole season.